The Screams Around the ‘Hood

21 Mar

Saturday morning started much like many of my other Saturday mornings: I hit snooze at least 3 times, dragged myself out of bed, brushed my teeth, washed my face, used the restroom, ran around my house looking for different articles of running clothing, and was out the door with a protein ball in hand by 4:30 AM. I arrived at our meet-up spot with five minutes to spare so I felt pretty good about myself and may have done a little patting on one’s own back.

My old Marathonfest training group was recently dismantled, so we had to merge with a larger training group. The new group started our long run with a new (to me) 3-mile loop that involved some running on a nearby trail. A dark, poorly lit trail.

By the time our large group hit the trail, we had dispersed into smaller groups. My friend Rachelle and I were running in between two larger groups, so I was thankful she had a small light clipped to her visor. At least we could make out shapes, which is always good when running in the dark.

We were deep in our conversation (which was likely about food or travel since she blogs about both here) when suddenly we heard something making a huge ruckus in the bushes to our left. This was the kind of ruckus that happens just before something, or someone, jumps out of the bushes and attacks you.

At first I was focused on trying to see what was about to lunge at me, but Rachelle’s tiny light only showed a bush shaking violently. Then I think I realized that whether it was a person or an animal, either was bad and the magnitude of the situation suddenly hit me. And then came this:

When something jumps out of the bushes during your run on a dark trail ...

When something jumps out of the bushes during your run on a dark trail …

Source: Reaction GIFs

I screamed. At the top of my lungs. And so did Rachelle. In the wee, dark hours of the morning. And then we took off sprinting, certain that at any moment we would be jumped by either a crazed serial killer or a rabid bear. And it would likely be whichever one of us was running slower.

By this time the group in front of us had stopped and we quickly caught up to them. They assured us that there was neither a crazed knife-wielding man nor a rabid beast chasing us, so we stopped to catch our breathe. We ran the rest of the mile at a faster pace than usual … being scared shitless really puts a pep in your step.

As we exited the trail we saw a patrol car drive by and we couldn’t help but wonder if it was responding to concerned calls regarding women screaming on the trail. Their reaction time was good and I made a mental note to scream as loud as I could if ever I was to be attached by serial killer or bear. And be the faster runner. 😉

Have you ever been scared on a run?


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